02/01/2011 1:12PM

Sherman still unsure how good Jim's No Preacher might be


ALBANY, Calif. – Jim’s No Preacher is off to a perfect start. A 3-year-old Minister’s Wild Cat colt, owned and bred by Robert Bone and Jim Robinson and trained by Steve Sherman, Jim’s No Preacher has won his first three career races.

He won a Dec. 12 maiden race at Golden Gate Fields, captured the first allowance condition in start No. 2 on Jan. 8, and won his third straight last Saturday in an allowance race at the same level.

Sherman trained Goggles McCoy to victories in his first four starts, including the Real Good Deal, and knew from the start he had a runner with stakes potential.

He’s a bit more cautious in his assessment of Jim’s No Preacher.

“We knew he could run,” Sherman said. “We didn’t know how much. He hasn’t beaten much thus far.

“He’s still a little green, but he’s more focused. He’s got a great mind. He wants to win, and I think he’ll do anything you want.”

With three sprints in six weeks, Jim’s No Preacher will probably not race again until next month. Sherman said he may even try a route with the colt. Turf may also be an option.

Sherman likes the colt’s personality.

“He’s a stud horse, but he’s very docile and he’s people-friendly,” Sherman said.

Sherman is also still assessing his 3-year-old filly Sister Glady Oh La, who ran fourth in a tough allowance race Sunday.

“I still don’t know how good she is,” he said.

If nothing else, she has exceeded initial expectations, having started her career as a bottom-level maiden claimer. She finished third in the California Oaks.

Apprentice Cartwright wins two

Apprentice Alice Cartwright, a 24-year-old native of Shrewsbury, England, scored her first riding double at Golden Gate Fields last Thursday, bringing in the Steve Specht-trained Blarney Kiss for a $41.80 payoff and the Sergio Ledezma-trained Betty Blended at $16.

Cartwright, who scored her first victory at Golden Gate on Jan. 9 on the Specht-trained Wentzville Man, has 4 wins, 4 seconds and 4 thirds in 38 Golden Gate mounts.

Cartwright grew up in steeplechasing country and went to work for trainer Henry Daly. Cartwright, who tacks 109 pounds, was too light to work steeplechase horses.

“They need heavy riders when they work, and I was too light,” she said.

She also didn’t get a chance at flat racing either. “They don’t like girls,” she said of the horsemen where she grew up.

In 2007, she came to the United States, working first for trainer Barclay Tagg at his Fair Hill, Md., barn.

“I never sat on a flat horse until I came over here,” she said.

She rode her first winner on Oct. 19, 2009, for trainer Pat McBurney at the Meadowlands and rode nine winners at Monmouth Park last year before heading west.

“There are a lot of bug riders back East so I looked for a place that had fewer,” she said.

Cartwright characterizes herself as a quiet, patient rider.

“A lot of riders are kind of aggressive,” she said. “I can get a horse to relax.”

She says Specht has “been a great help” in allowing her to breeze horses for him and ride in the afternoon, and that jockeys Russell Baze and Omar Figueroa have also helped her.

◗ Golden Gate will have a special 11:15 a.m. post on Super Bowl Sunday. The track will give away a 42-inch flat screen television after each of the eight races.